Committee on Academic Policies and Standards (CAPS)

Minutes for April 11, 2008


Members present:         J. Boyle, M. Cary, R. Gillis, D. Lake, R. LeDocq, C. Lee, J. Shanks

Members excused:        D. Hammen, R. Haro, S. Navarre, J. Shadforth

Members absent:          J. Rome

Consultants/Guests:       C. Bakkum, C. Burkhardt, A. Dittman, G. Herling, S. Keller, S. Knudson, T. Thill, M. Tyvoll, J. Von Ruden


1.      Meeting called to order at 3:20 p.m. by Chair LeDocq.


2.      Chair LeDocq reported that prior to the next CAPS meeting she will check on which meeting minutes are outstanding and need to be considered for approval.


3.      The committee heard an appeal by a student in the college of Science and Health. The student is a returning adult who has 11 credits remaining to complete an undergraduate degree at UW-L. One of those courses is MTH 145 in which the student previously earned a grade of F. The chair of the Mathematics department supports allowing an online course substitute for MTH 145 at UW-L.


M/S/P (7/0/0) Allow this student to repeat MTH 145 at another institution and allow his remaining degree credits to be completed while not in residence at UW-L (e.g., via distance education).


4.      Michelle Tyvoll, director of the ESL institute, spoke with the committee about the need for changes to the ESL program so that failing students can be declared ineligible to continue in the ESL program based on their unsuccessful performance. Currently, there is no policy in place that places students on probation or declares them ineligible to continue. There was general consensus that such a policy would be appropriate. There was some discussion of this issue which included the need for an ineligible status appeals process as part of the policy. M. Tyvoll will draft a policy regarding retention and probation for ESL students and bring it back to CAPS for consideration.


5.      Chris Bakkum, interim registrar, presented information to the committee regarding review of the current undergraduate incomplete policy. The current policy states:


“An Incomplete must be removed and a final grade recorded in the Records and Registration Office no later than midterm of the second semester in residence, following the term in which the incomplete was incurred. …”


This wording can be problematic if a student leaves the university prior to the time when the incomplete must be removed. Thus, C. Bakkum recommends that CAPS consider revising the policy as was recently done by Graduate Council for graduate courses.


M/S/P (7/0/0) Revise the Removal of Incomplete policy to read “… no later than one calendar year (12 months), following the term in which the incomplete was incurred. …”

6.      C. Bakkum, along with Jan Von Ruden, informed the committee of a potential need to make changes to the current UW-L policy on withdrawal from classes. Specifically, they would like CAPS to consider eliminating the 4 drop limit (after the first two semesters) that is currently in place. This recommendation is a consequence of preparing and planning for implementation of the new student information system (PeopleSoft). The new software that will be implemented cannot count the number of Withdrawals for each student.


C. Bakkum presented the committee with information regarding UW System policy on drop rates and drop rate data for UW-L and other UW institutions. UW institutions are to not exceed a drop rate of 5% of the credit hours registered (as reported on the 10th day of enrollment). UW-L is one of three UW System institutions that have a drop limit. Others charge students extra fees for dropping courses after a certain time. UW-L has been at or below the 5% limit for 2001-2006. Essentially, so have all other UW institutions except for UW Colleges.


There was some discussion of this issue. It was noted that the withdrawal policy may impact course repeat issues. C. Bakkum will provide the committee with more information on the withdrawal policy of other UW institutions.


7.      Meeting adjourned at approximately 4:50 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Melanie Cary, Co-Secretary